The buyer of Njideka Akunyili Crosby’s Super Blue Omo has revealed themselves as Palm Beach’s Norton Museum:
The Norton Museum of Art today announced that it has acquired the painting that was the talk of the recent Art Basel art fair—Super Blue Omo (2016) by Njideka Akunyili Crosby. The mixed media painting, depicting a lone female figure, is the newest work created by the artist. It exemplifies her style, including her signature patterning made from transferring images of her own family and popular culture from her native Nigeria. Now based in Los Angeles, Crosby creates subtly subversive compositions that offer a unique perspective on her life in America and contribute to the figurative tradition. Crosby was recently announced as the winner of the Prix Canson 2016, the prestigious annual award for works on paper.
The Norton Museum of Art recently featured Crosby’s work in its annual Recognition of Art by Women (RAW) exhibition series, which is dedicated to supporting the work of living women artists. The solo exhibition was the first survey of Crosby’s career and featured 15 large-scale new and recent works. Created after the RAW exhibition closed, Super Blue Omo is a continuation of the ideas explored in that show. The work will be included in Portals: Njideka Akunyili Crosby, the artist’s first solo exhibition in Europe at Victoria Miro, London from October 5 to November 5, 2016, and will then go on view at the Norton in February 2017. The acquisition was made possible through the generosity of Museum Trustee Irene Karp and her husband Jim.
Super Blue Omo joins a series of recent acquisitions by the Norton that have included important works by women artists. In early 2016, the Norton acquired Bathers (1913) by Marguerite Thompson Zorach, who earned a reputation as one of America’s leading modernists by becoming among the first to master Fauvism. The painting was featured in the Norton-organized exhibition O’Keeffe, Stettheimer, Torr, Zorach: Women Modernists in New York, which is now on view at the Portland Museum of Art in Maine. In spring 2016, through its Friends of American Art group, the Norton acquired Grace Hartigan’s 1953 painting Standing Figure, created during the key period when she was moving beyond the self-reflexive, non-objective style of Abstract Expressionism to find her own artistic voice. The first painting by this important mid-20th-century artist to enter the Museum’s permanent collection, Standing Figurewill go on view beginning July 5.